The Department of Alterations is a short story that occurs prior to the events in Crewel. Karoline Swander is the wife of an influential man and they’ve been unable to have a child. (Of course, it’s all her fault, right…Excuse me while I get sick). Sorry, back to the story. She has used up all of her legal options so she goes to a ‘tailor’ who may be able to help her get pregnant. It doesn’t end well.
I enjoyed re-visiting the strange and awful world of Arras. The more I read about it, though, it is becoming clear that women really are second class citizens and men have all the real power. I hope this will start to change as Ms. Albin continues the Crewel series.
Karoline’s story was briefly mentioned at the beginning of Crewel and it was interesting to get more details. Cormac, one of the powerful men of Crewel, makes a brief appearance. He really is a scumbag. If I had any doubt this story confirmed that for me. And, Karoline’s husband Max is quite the stereotypical D-Bag himself.
Just a quick note about the cover – the cover art for Crewel was gorgeous and soft. This cover is disturbing but it fits the story.
If you enjoyed Crewel and want to read a little more, then go to Tor.com and find this short story. 4/5 stars.